Lookin' at you Chingling
By - Shubibs
Honesty I'm keeping my expectations low for Legend Arceus I got to see more gameplay of it for me to be actually excited for it. A open world Pokemon game is nice and all but I really would like to see Gen 9 or something but yeah my hopes for Legend Arceus being good are just low.
let's not forget how shallow the wild area was. my expectation at this moment is a game that shallow.
just waiting to be proven wrong
it gets to 17 on the switch pro!
With the switch pro rumors there’s also rumors that legends will only have a high fps on the pro. I really hope that’s not the case though
It shouldn’t need to just run on any “Pro” model.
If the leaks are correct, its just gonna have lower graphics settings on the old switch, and just look a little better on the pro to make better use of its hardware, but then again it may also be just that pro is gonna have 4k graphics.
From what we know the pro-model is 4k focused. It will probably run the same on both but only at 1080p on the original.
Did people not watch the whole presentation and see the Chingling moving at 30fps?
I am well aware about those few sec where Chingling looked fine next to the player character, but that doesn't change that there was a 10 fps Chingling aswell. It's fair to be concerned about it.
The 10fps Chingling is actually a billboarded sprite rather than a 3d model. Whenever we see the Pokemon moving at 10fps, it’s because they’re sprites with a small amount of animation key frames (all of the 3D Pokemon models move smoothly like the 30fps Chingling at the end).
Billboarding is a graphics technique used to render objects that are farther away. This isn’t likely anything to worry about as all they need to do is add a few more key frames into the animation.
Billboarding is a different technique than animation LODs. It is highly likely that billboarding is not the technique being used on the chingling, as to billboard a dynamic character sprite would require thousands of high res images. Doing this for each pokemon would quickly cost GB worth of disk space. In addition, the time sink for pre-rendering each animation and the iteration cost of doing so would be horrible. I will explain in detail how all of this works.
Billboarding is when you replace a 3d model with a 2D image that looks like a model from a specific angle. Thus, the model must not change angles, and the players viewpoint must not change the view angle of the billboarded asset, as then we will see obvious skewing, like when you look at a painting from an oblique angle. The asset that has become a billboard must also not animate, as then you need a billboarded sprite for each frame of animation. You can do a simple looping animation, called a flipbook, but this already greatly increases the on-disk memory cost of the asset.
Billboards are most often used for "vistas" in games--views that are far away and that the player cannot see more than one side. There is an advanced billboard technique called "impostor", where one billboard image from many angles re combined into a single asset, and the image with the current view angle fades in as the player moves around the asset. This is a common technique for open world games, such as fortnite's trees (I saw this talk at GDC a few years ago).
If Chingling were billboarded, the game developers would need to have an image of chingling from many angles, and to have a set of images for *every* animation that chingling does from *every* camera angle. They would need to do this for *every* pokemon. That is an obscene amount of work, and textures are generally the largest assets loaded into memory. Each time an animation was added or changed, they would need to re-create the animations. There would also be no way to use procedural animation, which dynamically blends different poses depending on circumstances, which is very common in the industry. To be fair, I doubt GF is using procedural animation.
Since billboards are far too expensive and time consuming to create, what is a different option? There exists instead an industry standard method for reducing the cost of animation for assets. This standard is extremely simple in theory, and it is called Animation Level of Detail (LOD). This cost reduction can be driven by how far away an asset is, as well as how many FPS the game is currently running at.
Animation LOD is simple: the computer calculates a frame before rendering it. On each frame, typically each animating character plays the next frame of an animation. This costs computing power to do. A character can instead tell the cpu "only update my animation every 3 frames". Now, the CPU doesn't have to do that work for a few frames. Then, it jumps from frame 1 of the animation to frame 4 when it is time. In this way, the computer reduces the cost of animation dynamically at runtime, and the game developers can continue building animations, swapping them out, and changing the logic that plays them--this cost saving method will always work.
Thus, chingling was animating at 10 fps because the computer was saying "holy crap, if I compute everything I will render at 20 fps. I need to switch all secondary characters to a lower animation LOD so that I can free up resources and render the rest of the scene at 30 fps.
So then why did it happen when the trainer was that close to the Pokémon?
Probably just a short render distance for it. For the full release, they just need to increase the distance value for when a billboarded sprite becomes a full 3D model, as well as increase the quality of the sprites.
They didn’t use this method in SwSh, which is why the pop-in in those games is so bad.
You can see more of this with trees in the background. The trees in the distance are flat 2d sprites whereas nearby trees are 3D models, and it seems that moving entities such as Pokemon have a shorter billboarding distance than static objects such as trees.
Considering the render distance in swsh was about 2 feet, I wouldn’t get my hopes up for gamefreak to make common sense improvements
True, but the Pokemon render distance is much higher in Legends Arceus as seen in the same Chingling shot. I believe the render distance in SwSh is approximately 20 metres around you, but by the looks of it, in Legends it's about 50-60 metres or so.
I can see why you'd think it's billboarded especially after that Piplup shot where one in the back appeared to have a flat shadow, but judging by the shot where a Pokeball is thrown at Shinx, IIRC it actually looks like it's still 3D, so I believe it's not billboarding but rather just a decrease in animation framerate like many other games do.
I could be wrong tho, or they could be utilizing both techniques. It's hard to say without being able to run around and look at stuff yourself.
I am well aware about those few sec where Chingling looked a little rough next to the player character, but that doesn't change that there was a 30fps Chingling aswell. It's fair to have believe there really isn't anything to be concerned about it.
As the old phrase goes, “No one hates Pokémon more than Pokémon fans”.
Literally, every single time somebody brings up the Chingling I think of that.
Edit: Why on earth does this have so many downvotes?
Cause the problem is still there: the Chingling's animation framerate drops way too close to the player.
The 30FPS Chingling shot does not nullify the issue present in the trailer's build, because in that shot the Chingling is literally in front of the player.
Hey, thanks for responding!
I can definitely see your reasoning on the Chingling but personally, as long as it's not super obvious then I think it will be fine. Although if the range was increased that would be even better.
I'm just sort of tired of SwSh’s Pokemon spawn practically right on top of you, that I think that any step forward however small will still be good.
I do know that this is an unpopular opinion but I would rather have a really slow Chingling than a Chingling that appeared out of nowhere right in front of me. Of course, though we haven't seen any Pokemon spawn in so it could be just as bad as SwSh. The best-case scenario would be if it did a long-range fade away ala Mario Odyssey.
Yea, I totally agree, and judging by the very same shot with Chingling, the Pokemon render distance is upped by like 2-3 times compared to SwSh, and nobody even acknowledges that
Daring today, aren’t we?
Careful people on this sub are prone to tantrums when you criticize gamefreak.
Yes, but for this? You are just a dumbass.
Lol you just did it
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I made this
Well, to be fair, Legends Arceus shows in the same shot as that Chingling that the Pokemon draw distance is increased by like 2-3 times in SwSh.
I do think they'll increase the distance at which animation frame drops happen (cause it IS a resource saving technique that helps games like GTA V and many others to look good), but even if they don't, it's still better than the horrible pop-in of SwSh